age difference

in my youth, 
my family took me
on road trips all over the country.
I drank coffee and tea
with women who were wise
and men who were haughty.
I witnessed the aftermath
of how forceful
and beautiful
nature can be.
when I stood at the precipice at Cappadocia,
where I gazed upon
the breathtaking fairy chimneys.
I trekked underground
through tunnels in hidden cities,
built in secrecy for Zoroastrian refugees.
I took in the sight of cisterns and minarets,
raised up in former centuries.
I walked barefoot, without pain,
all across the greatest salt seas.
walked from Harlem to Brighton Beach,
it took me 16 hours on feet;
that one day in New York,
back when I was in my teens.
I saw,
read,
learned,
grew,
and found pieces all over the world
that fit a part of me.
Still,
as I piece myself together day by day,
I know that I am not complete.
I know that,
when my aching feet,
brought me to you last week,
I felt at ease,
at peace,
but still almost childlike;
even though I am thirty,
and you’re only
twenty-three.

you are my destruction

I’m being haunted by a ghost.
He’s never really there,
but sometimes he makes a sound,
and makes me think I’m not alone.

He’s like cigarettes to me;
they both destroy me slowly,
but I can’t stop reaching for them when I’m low.

He doesn’t know how to love;
he can only run away.
But I, when I feel something,
I run towards it with all my heart.
I’m not afraid to love,
and I’m not scared of ghosts.

ellerin (your hands)

your hands,
always seeking mine to hold for comfort;
at night, wielding a knife to cook for me;
when you write, holding your pen the wrong way,
and holding on way too tightly;
your hands, my love,
are precious to me.

they are calloused from work;
there’s dust under your fingernails.
still,
even if divine angels came down from heaven,
and reached their holy hands out to me,
I would reach for yours instead,
because your hands, my love,
ellerin,
they captivate me, then set me free.

landscape

I have no poetry in me;
in me, there are valleys
full of dark memories,
there are rivers foaming against the rocks,
full of incomprehensible thoughts and anxieties.

In me, there are mountains,
made of challenges I am yet to overcome;
struggles with my sense of self-worth,
fear of the unknown,
a cruel view of my own self.

There are dark clouds made of past mistakes,
threatening and ominous,
obscuring a blue sky full of hope,
nevertheless,
the sun shines through,
and love endures.